Gave my new R15 a workout for the 2nd time in the past 4 days for the purpose of some intense prairie dog liquidation on some friends’ land. This was the first time I got a chance to use my Nikon Coyote Special (NCS from here out) riding on top of the R15 both for target shooting and shooting on live animals. Here’s my first impression, short and sweet:
1. I HATE the circle reticles for target sighting and zeroing. I had a hard time matching it up with the bullseye (though I shot consistent MOA groups at zeroing on Saturday AND this morning) and holding it steady when compared with your standard crosshair.
2. and maybe contradictory to the first statement, I absolutely LOVE the circle reticle for target acquisition, quick shots and getting on animals. Not only was it incredible for lining up initial shots, but it was awesome for moving targets and fast follow up shots.
The NCS isn’t just a center circle reticle, but built with a BDC reticle from Nikon. The problem with it is this: it attempts to standardize all ammunition and loads to fit that particular reticle. It doesn’t allow for compensation for different loads, and even different scope heights. Being on my AR, even with the Burris PEPR mount, it’s a good 2″+ off the center bore and plays some havoc with the BDC circles below the main. This creates a greater Point Blank Rangewhich reduces holdover but isn’t very BDC friendly. Today I was holding my top circle on dogs out to sub 400 yards.
I’m shooting an AR in .223, with 50 grain V-Max bullets. The NCS reticle is set up for a 55 grain FMJ at 3100 fps, while my 50 V-Max is running about 3200 to 3300 fps. This changes everything, though it doesn’t make the BDC moot altogether. I just need to do some more shooting and find out where my impacts are for each of the circles and maybe go a bit low with my 100 yard zero.
All-in-all I think it’s a match made in heaven, but being an old school cross hairs guy it’s gonna take some adjusting. I HIGHLY recommend you try this though. Again, it’s not a target practice scope, it’s a hunting scope and for that purpose it’s hard to beat!
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